The Multiple Roles and
Relationships of Ethical
Revisiting the Ideal, the Real, and the
Simon Shimshon Rubin, PhD
This chapter suggests that current thinking about dual and multiple relationships may benefit from another look. The term “multiple role relationships” is proposed to allow for a reexamination of what is and what should be the proper management of professional relationships that generally are multidimensional. As will be shown, multiple roles and multiple allegiances characterize the interpersonal realities of practice for the mental health professional. As such, their management, not their prohibition, is the issue. The chapter is divided into three sections. It opens with current views of multiple relationships; considers representative sources and bases for prohibitions against dual or multiple relationships; and closes by arguing for a view that stresses the context of human relationships as one of involvement rather than functional interaction alone.